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Revision as of 00:55, 20 March 2009
The Bywater  is a portion of New Orleans down the Mississippi River from the French Quarter and the Faubourg Marigny. Its boundries are often debated. Most New Orleanians and the city's historic district office describe it as being bounded by St Claude Ave to the North, The Industrial Canal to the East, Montegut Street to the West and the Mississippi River to the South. It is also known as the "upper ninth ward" as compared to the "lower ninth ward" which lies East of the Industrial Canal to the St. Bernard Parish line (the downriver limit of the city of New Orleans).
"Island of Salvation Botanica" satisfies local Voodoo supply needs
Bywater is a bohemian neighborhood a bit east (down river) from the French Quarter. Artists and musicians relocated here when the French Quarter became too pricy. Now joined by professionals and young families it's high elevation has allowed it to thrive post Katrina. It is primarily residential but there are lively pubs and restaurants scattered throughout the neighborhood. Travelers and residents from other parts of the city are steadily discovering this neighborhood's old-time, laid-back charm.
The largest section of New Orleans proposed riverfront development is planned for Bywater's Poland Avenue Wharf. Real-estate developers; ICInola are investing 30-million dollars into unused warehouses at Bartholmew and Burgundy to create 180+ green-certified luxury loft spaces. The Desire Streetcar may one day return to replace what is currently "A Bus Named Desire"
It is a very pleasant stroll down Royal, Dauphine, or Chartres Streets through the historic Faubourg Marigny; approximately 10 blocks from Esplanade Avenue (the downriver limit of the French Quarter) to the Bywater.
From the French Quarter/CBD, the easiest route is down Rampart Street, which merges (via a small connector called McShane Place) to become St. Claude Avenue just before Elysian Fields. St. Claude forms the main thoroughfare passing through the Bywater and Lower Ninth Ward.
Using Public Transportation
The Bywater is served primarily by two bus lines operated by the New Orleans RTA . These are:
- 5, Marigny-Bywater: you can catch this bus on Canal Street at the corner of N. Peters (right in front of the Canal Place tower, across the street from the casino); it goes through the French Quarter on N. Peters/Decatur Streets before taking Elysian Fields back four blocks to Dauphine, and from there follows Dauphine Street through the Marigny and Bywater neighborhoods all the way down to Poland Avenue next to the Industrial Canal. Coming back up the route is the same except the bus follows Royal Street instead of Dauphine.
- 88, St Claude-Delery: you can catch this bus at the corner of Canal & Rampart; it basically follows Rampart and St. Claude Avenues all the way through the Marigny, Bywater, and Lower Ninth Ward until finally turning back just across the parish line in Arabi, Louisiana.
Fares are $1.25 each way.
- St. Claude Arts District / SCAD, St. Claude Ave., . New Orleans newest & hottest arts district thats not your usual tourist-centric arts destination. A true 'only in New Orleans' experience.
- L'Art Noir New Orleans, . Underground art gallery specializing in lowbrow and unusual art.
- Dr. Bob's Art Gallery, . 3027 Chartres St. Art studio is open to the public.
- Vaughan's, 800 Lesseps. Local favorite happy jazz player Kermit Ruffins is a regular Thursday nights, take a cab to and from here.
- The Alombrados Encampment of Ordo Templi Orientis  hosts performances of The Gnostic Mass, frequent classes on Magick, and intensive training programs of Scientific Illuminism.
- Bywater Art Market every third Saturday of the month, at Markey Park .
- Island of Salvation Botanica, 835 Piety St, . This is a real voodoo supply store, not a tourist trap like those in the French Quarter.
- Jack Dempsey's, 738 Poland Ave. Seafood
- Coffea , 3218 Dauphine St. Hip coffee house plus breakfast and lunch foods. Open every day 7a -3pm. tel 342-2484
- Elizabeth's, 601 Gallier St. Creole, Southern, and po-boys. Neighborhood favorite for breakfast and lunch. T-Sa 7:30AM-2:30PM. Now open for dinner as well.
- The Joint, 801 Poland Ave, 504-949-3232. alwayssmokin.com Excellent down home barbecue. Lunch and dinner.
- Bywater Bar-B-Que, 3162 Dauphine St, 504-944-4445. Bar-b-que, sandwiches, seafood. Lunch and dinner.
- Country Club, 634 Louisa St, 504-945-0742.  American food, gay friendly private club and pool in rear. Lunch and dinner.
- Bacchanal 600 Poland Avenue. Wine shop, offers wine by the glass-- and irregularly has visiting chefs prepare gourmet treats. Now offers lunch too.
- Saturn Bar nearby at 3067 St. Claude Ave, this is a strange old bohemian dive with some of the city's funkiest and most bizarre decor. Drink cheap beer, whiskey, or Southern Comfort. Don't expect them to know how to make fancy-pants mixed drinks. Rumored to be the favorite of Nick Cage.
- BJ's Lounge, 4301 Burgundy @ Lesseps. Friendly neighborhood dive with a colorful cast of characters. Beer and booze bar- you're not gonna get an apple martini here. Cookoffs and potlucks are fairly frequent, occasional live music.
- Vaughan's Lounge, 4226 Dauphine @ Lesseps. World-famous music venue hosting righteous-trumpter Kermit Ruffins and the BBQ swingers every Thursday night at 9:00pm. Boiled crawfish or shrimp every Friday. Free Food during Saints games.
- Bywater Bed & Breakfast, 1026 Clouet St, .
- Lookout Inn Bed & Breakfast, 833 Poland Ave., .
Tourists use general caution. The Bywater is usually a fairly safe neighborhood but we do have violent crime here, just like all of New Orleans. Know where you're going and don't go exploring unfamiliar areas at night. Try and be street smart.